HideMyAss (HMA) is a seasoned VPN provider that has existed in the market since 2005, making it one of the pioneers of commercial VPNs.
IPVanish, on the other hand, came into the VPN market relatively late in 2012. Nonetheless, the service has enjoyed outstanding success in a very short period of time.
In this HideMyAss vs IPVanish comparison, the two providers will go head-to-head through a series of 13 rounds to set the record straight who the real victor is between the two providers.
- Jurisdiction– Where the provider’s headquarters are located
- Logging Policy– The type of consumer data that is kept in records by the provider
- Security– Encryption protocols and whether the VPN leaks IP/DNS
- Speed– Connection speed after VPN server is connected
- Server Network– the total number of servers
- Performance and Reliability– The overall functionality of the VPN
- Extra Features– The additional features that are provided by the service
- Torrenting– Does the VPN support torrenting?
- Netflix– Does the VPN support Netflix?
- Pricing, Payment Methods and Refund Policy– How many payment methods are supported, the cost of subscription packages, and what is the refund policy?
- Compatibility– Which devices are supported?
- Customer Support– Quality of tech support
- Value– Which VPN has better quality at lower costs?
After evaluating both VPNs on these points, the winner is:
Jurisdiction is always one of the key considerations on which the privacy level of a VPN depends. A VPN could have all the security features to give you the peace of mind you expect on the web, but if it is located in a jurisdiction with invasive surveillance, your privacy is at risk.
Five out more about 5/9/14 Eyes jurisdictions and why they should be avoided.
HMA is headquartered in the UK. The UK is a one of the core members of the Five Eyes alliance, which basically means that you can’t rely on your data being safe in the servers of HMA owing to the influence of surveillance agencies in the country.
IPVanish, not faring any better than HMA, is located in the US, another core member of the 5 Eyes. From the privacy standpoint, US isn’t the ideal location for a VPN provider to be based in because agencies in the country have dangerous powers to eavesdrop on your data if they so desire.
As far as jurisdiction is concerned, both IPVanish and HideMyAss are equally bad.
2. Logging Policy
Winner: HMA is the winner in this round for better transparency in logging policy
In this round, we’re going to compare HideMyAss vs IPVanish logging polices to see if these providers really care about maintain anonymity and privacy of users.
HMA: Some Logging
Here’s what the logging policy page of HMA states:
HMA keeps logs of timestamps, bandwidth, and IP address of the VPN servers you are using. However, it doesn’t maintain traffic logs or originating IP addresses, which are the two types of logs you definitely don’t want anyone to keep.
Overall, HMA can improve its logging policy further to earn more trust of the users, but the existing policy isn’t half bad either, considering the fact that many providers keep all sorts of logs capable of destroying your privacy.
You can explore our article on VPN logging policies to learn about providers you can trust your privacy to.
IPVanish: Vague Policy
IPVanish doesn’t specify the types of logs it keeps. Rather, the policy page of the provider makes blanket statements which only mentions that the provider keeps no traffic logs.
IPVanish needs to improve its logging policy to be more transparent.
3. Security: HideMyAss vs IPVanish
Winner: IPVanish wins this round because it offers a wider range of VPN protocols.
In terms of security, HMA and IPVanish offer the same level of VPN protocol and encryption technology.
HMA: Decent Security
Hide My Ass offers the commonly used VPN protocols of OpenVPN (UDP/TCP), PPTP, and L2TP. For encryption, HMA uses AES-256, which is the standard level of encryption in use by most top-rated VPN providers.
HMA also protects users from DNS and IP leaks, so you can surf the web without constantly worrying about getting exposed.
IPVanish: Good Security
IPVanish applies AES-256 encryption which is combined with VPN protocols of OpenVPN, IKEv2, SSTP, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP.
IPVanish is also equipped with IP leaks and DNS protection to fully secure activities and identity while you are using the VPN.
Consult our VPN leak test guide to find out more about which VPN services leak IPs and which don’t.
4. Speed: IPVanish vs HideMyAss
Speed is a critical factor that every user of VPN wants to attain to the maximum degree. However, there is a relatively small number of providers with the infrastructure to deliver fast speeds.
IPVanish and HMA are both quite capable VPNs on this front as evidenced below. The speed tests were performed on a base Internet connection speed of 30 Mbps.
HMA: Average But Consistent Speeds
HMA normally drops down your speed level by more than 30%, making it a VPN with average speeds. Nonetheless, it is still faster than many other providers and reasonably consistent.
IPVanish: Excellent Speeds
IPVanish is quite rightly hailed as one of the fastest VPNs in the market. Performing the speed test on a US, Boston server, the provider clocked in at 24.63 Mbps which is extremely impressive.
5. Server Network
IPVanish has a decent server network consisting of 1,200 servers in 60+ countries. Using IPVanish’s network, you can gain access to geo-restricted websites, content, and social media from anywhere in the world with outstanding ease.
HideMyAss also has a comparable server size having 930+ VPN servers but covering a much wider geographical area (190+ countries).
As such, both providers have good coverage and a reasonably sized VPN server network.
6. Performance and Reliability
IPVanish and HMA both offer well-designed and simple VPN apps. Anyone with half a brain cell can easily it.
You can easily navigate your way around the app, change preferences, and connect to VPN servers in a matter of a few seconds.
I have encountered no bugs in the VPN apps of IPVanish and HMA, which show that these are properly QA’d apps, developed by expert software developer teams.
7. Extra Features
HMA doesn’t offer a wide array of extra features. In fact, the app kill switch is the only true extra features that comes packed with this VPN.
IPVanish is also one of the few providers to offer split-tunneling, but this feature only works for the Android version of the app. You can also take advantage of VPN obfuscation (which is branded by IPVanish as “Scramble” for MacOS, Android, and Firestick devices) to stay under cover for websites that filter VPN traffic, preventing your access.
8. Torrenting: HMA vs IPVanish
Winner: None of these providers are recommended for torrenting. So, this round is at tie.
Many VPN providers are unable to support torrenting on their servers, fearing DMCA notices. HMA supports torrenting but only on a few servers including Amsterdam, Frankfurt, New York, London, and Prague.
However, the fact that HMA is based in UK is discouraging because the country has strict laws against digital copyright infringement through torrenting. Find out more in our best VPN for torrenting guide.
IPVanish doesn’t discourage torrenting. In fact, the provider advertises its capability to offer security to users looking for a safe way to unblock torrent sites.
Nonetheless, I’d still be careful downloading torrents via IPVanish because the company is under the jurisdiction of the US and the country doesn’t take kindly to users caught infringing copyrights.
A good number of people seek VPN services solely as a tool for unblocking Netflix regions containing their favourite titles.
Looking for VPNs with special powers to unblock Netflix? Check out our article on How to Watch Netflix with a VPN for details.
HideMyAss has a Netflix optimized server in Liberty Island, USA that works perfectly well for accessing US content library of Netflix. However, you might experience problems if you try to access Netflix from other servers.
IPVanish can unblock US Netflix streaming without any trouble. All you need is to connect to a US server before launching Netflix and you can immediately start streaming shows and movies that were previously unavailable to you outside US.
10. Pricing, Payments, and Refund policy
Winner: HMA is finally able to get the better of IPVanish with longer refund window, more packages, and almost identical pricing.
Pricing and packages are one of the first thing that any potential VPN user takes into account. Let’s see how the pricing and packages that IPVanish and HideMyAss have to offer.
HMA provides a 4 different packages including a 1-month, 12-month, 24-month, and 36-month plan with the cheapest offer being the latter plan available for $2.99/month.
All packages have a 30-day money-back guarantee and you can purchase these plans via Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, AMEX, and UnionPay. Unfortunately, HMA doesn’t accept bitcoin payments.
IPVanish offers 1-month, 3-month, and 1-year subscription packages. The year-long package can be availed for $6.49/month.
The pricing is slightly cheaper than HMA, but these packages only have a 7-day money-back guarantee. IPVanish accepts more types of payments including PayPal, credit cards, bitcoin and a number of other options.
Winner: IPVanish supports a wider range of devices. Thus, it is the winner once again.
HideMyAss features a nicely designed app for all major platforms and operating systems including Windows PC, Mac, iPhone/iPad, Android, & Linux.
IPVanish has support for a wider range of devices and platforms including Windows (PC/Phone), Mac OS, iOS, Android, FireStick, Linux, and even Chromebooks and some routers.
12. Customer Support
HMA provides live chat support which is quite easy to reach and get a useful answer to your queries from. The provider also offers FAQs and knowledgebase consisting of answers to commonly asked questions as well as setup guides for your assistance.
IPVanish offers customer support via live chat, emails, and even telephone for US customers during business hours (9-5) on weekdays. In addition, the official website contains detailed guides, FAQs, and knowledgebase to answer your queries.
13. Value for Money
The head-to-head comparison above gives way to an accurate evaluation of which VPN offers better value for money.
There is little difference between IPVanish and HMA in terms of pricing. However, on the whole, IPVanish offers a broader range of features that work efficiently in the line of enhancing your web security and privacy.
As such, if you’re looking for value for your money, then IPVanish can satisfy your needs quite convincingly.
This is why IPVanish is the winner in this round.
HideMyAss vs IPVanish Comparison 2019: Final Verdict
Here is the summary of the contest between IPVanish vs HideMyAss:
- Jurisdiction– Tie
- Logging Policy– HMA
- Security– IPVanish
- Speed– IPVanish
- Server Network– Tie
- Performance and Reliability– Tie
- Extra Features– IPVanish
- Torrenting– Tie
- Netflix– IPVanish
- Pricing, Payment Methods and Refund Policy– HMA
- Compatibility– IPVanish
- Customer Support– Tie
- Value– IPVanish
This concludes our IPVanish vs. HideMyAss review. Although the winner here is IPVanish owing to the fact that it beat HMA in 6 of the 13 rounds while HMA only managed to win 2, HMA still deserves merit because it is not by any means a bad VPN service.
In fact, in terms of privacy, both of the providers are poorly positioned courtesy of their jurisdiction within Five Eyes nations and the logging policies aren’t exactly ideal either. However, the major strength of IPVanish stems from its strong security features such as obfuscation, split-tunneling, and kill switch, as well as its support for streaming services.
Therefore, as far as this comparison is concerned the winner is IPVanish.